Random Act of Kindness: NBA Superstar Chats Up Homeless Man, Hands Him Wad of Cash

On Thursday, the Boston Celtics visited Houston to take on the Rockets in a nationally broadcast game on TNT.

But about eight hours before that game took place, the Celtics had their morning shootaround at the Toyota Center, and it was then that Kyrie Irving showed that the season of giving doesn’t end on Christmas Day.

While Irving was walking back to the team bus after the shootaround, the Celtics star was approached by a homeless man who told Irving he was destitute.

Irving then dug in his pockets for a few seconds before pulling out a wad of cash and giving it to the man.

Video of the encounter was captured by Thomas Moreno and shared with TMZ Sports.

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It turned out to be $240 that Irving gave to the man, who had a reaction for the ages. He ran after Irving to thank him again before dancing in the street and hugging a stranger.

The act of kindness manifested itself in a good game for Irving against the Rockets as he had 23 points and 11 assists. However, it didn’t work out for his team as the Celtics lost 127-113.

After the game, Irving was critical of his team’s performance after Boston lost for the fourth time in six games.

“We have the talent, but it’s not enough in this league,” Irving said. “For us, it’s making sure that we’re doing the little things. …

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“I think the next step for us is just knowing that there are just other opportunities for you to be a basketball player other than having the ball in your hands. You don’t need the ball to just dribble, dribble and shoot a fadeaway every single time. You can cut backdoor, you can screen for a teammate. There are other things to help an offense flourish rather than just standing out on the perimeter.”

While Irving was upset with the loss, his act before the game will not be forgotten. It was reminiscent of something another Boston athlete did a few weeks ago.

During the World Series, Mookie Betts of the Red Sox delivered food to the homeless in front of the Boston Public Library, and Lou Merloni of WEEI-FM posted a photo of it.

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“We didn’t think it would be such a big thing,” said Cam Lewis, Betts’ best friend, who accompanied the 2018 AL MVP. “It was just the right thing to do.”

Betts’ season ended in a championship for his team, and Irving and the rest of the Celtics are hoping for the same for theirs.

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Ross Kelly has been a sportswriter since 2009.
Ross Kelly has been a sportswriter since 2009 and previously worked for ESPN, CBS and STATS Inc. A native of Louisiana, Ross now resides in Houston.
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